Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, Health Minister Adrian Dix, and Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth have put out a statement in support of BC healthcare workers.
The statement highlights the way healthcare workers have been harassed and intimidated by the public, simply for doing their jobs.
“BC’s healthcare workers are doing an exceptional job under the most challenging of circumstances. They deserve the support of all of us, particularly now as we work together to manage this next phase of the pandemic.”
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The recent cases of harassment and intimidation seem to be connected to members of the public who are seeking COVID-19 tests.
“We have received reports of healthcare workers at COVID-19 testing centres being intimidated, threatened and otherwise verbally harassed by some people seeking tests. The Government of BC recently brought into force the Access to Services Act to help protect the safety and well-being of healthcare workers at testing centres, and impeding services or intimidating workers at these sites is illegal.”
Tests in BC are currently primarily available for those who need them most.
“If you do not have any symptoms, you do not need to be tested. Please do not attempt to access testing services. This will allow health-care workers to prioritize care to those who need it.”
Healthcare workers have had a rough go of things throughout the pandemic. At the beginning stages of the pandemic, a nightly 7 pm cheer took place in communities across the province as a sign of public support.
The statement from the BC ministers also includes a reminder to follow the current health protocols, including washing your hands, wearing a mask, staying home if you’re sick, and getting vaccinated.